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PRECIOUS-Gold set for third weekly gain on tepid dollar, inflation worries

    * Gold up 1.8% so far this week
    * Dollar on track for weekly loss
    * SPDR Gold Trust holdings rose 0.6% on Thursday
    * Platinum set for second straight weekly decline

 (Adds details, updates prices)
    By Brijesh Patel
    May 21 (Reuters) - Gold prices steadied on Friday, and were
on track for a third straight weekly gain, as a weaker U.S.
dollar and growing inflationary pressure boosted demand for the
safe-haven metal.
    Spot gold        was little changed at $1,874.60 per ounce
by 0510 GMT, and has risen 1.8% so far this week. U.S. gold
futures        fell 0.3% to $1,876.10.
    "U.S. economic data has given us strong inflation alerts
this week, meaning yields and the dollar have fallen, strong
supportive factors for gold," OANDA senior market analyst
Jeffrey Halley said.
    "Additionally, I believe that upward trading momentum has
increased for gold as investors now believe that prices have
made a structural low."
    The dollar hovered around recent lows against its rivals and
was heading for a weekly loss, while benchmark 10-year Treasury
yields             fell.             
    Recent data showing a rise in prices in the United States
and the UK intensified concerns over inflation, lifting gold's
appeal as an inflation hedge.
    "Further stimulus are seen in different countries and these
in the minds of many will lead to inflation moving forward,"
Brian Lan, managing director at dealer GoldSilver Central said.
    "On the longer term, we continue to be bullish on gold as
the fundamentals that support owning gold have not changed and
wouldn't change for some time, in particular, the low-interest
rates environment."
    Indicative of sentiment, holdings of SPDR Gold Trust      ,
the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, rose 0.6%
to 1,037.09 tonnes on Thursday.          
    Meanwhile, risk sentiment in wider financial markets
remained upbeat, fuelled by hopes around a quick economic
recovery.            
    British retail sales surged by 9.2% in April as shops
reopened, their biggest jump since a previous reopening in June,
official data showed.             
    Elsewhere, palladium        fell 0.4% to $2,841.89 per
ounce, silver        eased 0.4% to $27.64. Platinum       
gained 0.2% to $1,197.97, but was on track for its second
straight weekly fall.

 (Reporting by Brijesh Patel in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi
Aich and Sherry Jacob-Phillips)
  
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